Trampoline Parks – A Rise in Popularity and RiskPersonal Injuries
One search on Google, and you’ll be quick to find articles regarding the rise in popularity of trampoline parks such as Sky Zone. You’ll also probably notice the numerous articles about children being injured, sometimes even hospitalized, due to accidents at trampoline parks.
At Hughey Law Firm, we have represented many clients due to injuries suffered at trampoline parks. Contact us today for a free consultation about your claim if you or your child suffered serious injuries at a trampoline park or any recreational trampoline located on someone else’s property.
CHILDREN, TRAMPOLINES, AND RISK
Although trampolines may appeal to persons of all ages, they are obviously most popular with children. However, due to the developing bodies and oftentimes lack of coordination in children, precautions should be taken when allowing children access to a trampoline.
According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, children younger than six (6) years old should not be allowed on trampolines. Moreover, unsupervised trampoline use and use by multiple children substantially increases the risk of injury. A study by the Consumer Product Safety Commission found that there were nearly 286,000 medically treated trampoline injuries, including 104,691 emergency department visits, throughout the United States during a recent year.
As trampoline use appears to be an inherently dangerous activity for children, particularly when unsupervised or when multiple children are using a single trampoline, it would only make sense that trampoline parks, in which countless children have unfettered access to a playground of trampolines, is also dangerous. The data seems to support this theory, as trips to the emergency room due to injuries at trampoline park injuries increased by 1,093% in a recent four-year period.
Although the number of trampoline injuries at trampoline parks is significantly lower than the number of trampoline injuries resulting from home trampolines, injuries suffered at trampoline parks were more likely to involve dislocation, injury to the lower extremities, and require hospital admission. Essentially, trampoline park injuries are more likely to be serious.
COMMON TRAMPOLINE INJURIES
Trampolines can provide a fun and enjoyable form of physical activity, but they also pose a risk of injuries, especially if safety precautions are not followed. Common trampoline injuries include:
- Sprains and Strains: Jumping and performing various maneuvers on a trampoline can lead to sprained ankles or strained muscles. Landing improperly or awkwardly can contribute to these injuries.
- Fractures and Broken Bones: Falls, collisions with other jumpers, or landing on the trampoline frame can result in fractures or broken bones, especially in the arms and legs.
- Contusions and Bruises: Bumping into other jumpers, landing awkwardly, or hitting the trampoline surface can cause bruises and contusions.
- Dislocations: Awkward landings or collisions can lead to dislocated joints, particularly in the shoulders and elbows.
- Head and Neck Injuries: Falls or flips gone wrong can result in head and neck injuries, including concussions or more severe trauma.
- Cuts and Abrasions: Contact with the trampoline springs, frame, or other hard surfaces can cause cuts and abrasions. Trampoline netting and padding are designed to reduce this risk, but injuries can still occur.
- Strains to the Neck and Back: Overexertion, improper landings, or attempting advanced maneuvers can strain the neck and back muscles.
- Achilles Tendon Injuries: Repeated jumping or awkward landings can contribute to Achilles tendon injuries, especially if the jumper does not warm up adequately.
- Injuries from Multiple Jumpers: Accidents can occur when multiple people are jumping simultaneously, leading to collisions and injuries.
- Trampoline Malfunctions: In rare cases, trampolines may have defects or malfunctions, leading to injuries. Regular inspection and maintenance are essential to ensure the trampoline is in good condition.
- Overexertion and Fatigue: Jumping for an extended period without adequate rest can lead to overexertion and fatigue, increasing the risk of injuries.
To reduce the risk of trampoline injuries, it’s important to follow safety guidelines:
- Supervision: Ensure that trampoline use is supervised, especially for younger children.
- One Jumper at a Time: Encourage one person to jump at a time to avoid collisions.
- Safety Net and Padding: Use a safety net enclosure and padding to reduce the risk of contact with the frame and springs.
- Proper Use: Discourage flips and somersaults, especially for inexperienced jumpers.
- Regular Inspections: Regularly inspect the trampoline for any signs of wear, tear, or damage.
If an injury does occur, seek medical attention promptly. Always follow safety guidelines and exercise caution when using trampolines to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. If you or your child suffered injuries in a trampoline incident on someone else’s property, you should also contact an experienced personal injury attorney in your area for a free case evaluation.
What Types of Compensation Can I Get for Trampoline Park Injuries?
If you or your child sustained injuries at a trampoline park due to negligence or unsafe conditions, you may be entitled to various types of compensation through a personal injury claim. The specific compensation you can seek depends on factors such as the nature and extent of your injuries, the circumstances surrounding the incident, and the applicable laws in your jurisdiction. Here are some common types of compensation that individuals may pursue in the aftermath of trampoline park injuries:
- Medical Expenses: You can seek compensation for all reasonable and necessary medical expenses related to your injuries, including hospital bills, surgery costs, medication, rehabilitation, and any future medical treatments.
- Lost Wages: If your injuries result in missed workdays or an inability to work temporarily or permanently, you may be eligible for compensation for lost wages and potential future earning capacity.
- Pain and Suffering: Compensation for pain and suffering covers the physical and emotional distress caused by the injuries. It is a form of non-economic damages that aims to compensate for the intangible impact of the incident on your well-being.
- Emotional Distress: Emotional distress compensation may be available if the trampoline park incident causes severe emotional trauma or psychological suffering.
- Permanent Disability or Impairment: If your injuries result in a permanent disability or impairment, you may be entitled to compensation for the long-term impact on your quality of life.
- Property Damage: In some cases, you may be able to seek compensation for damage to personal property, such as clothing or personal items, that occurred during the incident.
- Punitive Damages: In cases where the trampoline park’s actions are deemed grossly negligent or intentional, punitive damages may be awarded to punish the responsible party and deter similar behavior in the future.
- Legal Fees and Costs: If you decide to pursue a personal injury lawsuit, you may be entitled to recover legal fees and costs associated with your case if you prevail.
What Should I Do After a Trampoline Park Injury?
To pursue compensation for trampoline park injuries, it’s crucial to:
- Seek immediate medical attention and keep detailed records of all medical treatments.
- Document the incident, gather evidence, and obtain witness statements if possible.
- Report the incident to the trampoline park management and, if applicable, file an incident report.
- Consult a personal injury attorney with experience in premises liability or recreational facility injuries.
Laws regarding personal injury claims can vary, so it’s important to speak to a legal professional to understand your rights and options based on the specific circumstances of your case.
CONTACT AN EXPERIENCED LAWYER
If you or your child has been injured at a trampoline park, you may not automatically have a claim against the park, as there must be some kind of act or omission on the park’s behalf resulting in your or your child’s injury. Additionally, there may be waiver policy issues involved.
Regardless, trampoline park operators and managers must keep their trampoline parks safe to reduce the risks of serious injuries occurring.
To fully understand your legal right for injuries sustained at a trampoline park, it may be in your best interest to contact an attorney with experience in this area, such as those at Hughey Law Firm.
Nathan Hughey, an attorney and fourth-generation South Carolinian, founded Hughey Law Firm in 2007. Before that, he spent five years defending nursing homes and insurance companies. Leveraging his experience, he now advocates for those injured or wronged by such entities, securing over $220 million in verdicts and settlements.